The Dark Side of Early Childhood Leadership: How is long day care (LDC) educator’s’ dissatisfaction with leadership connected with their overall workplace satisfaction?

  • Tamara Cumming (Principal Supervisor)

Activity: Supervision/Examination/MentoringInternal HDR Supervision


Leadership in Long Day Care (LDC) services in Australia is pivotal to the production of high quality outcomes for young children and families (Waniganayake, Cheeseman, Fenech, Hadley & Shepherd, 2012; Rodd, 2013). Effective practices enacted by leaders (appointed managers or owners) are complex due to the individual leader’s perceptions of hierarchical power and possible propensity for misuse (Waniganayake, et elal. 2012). Current research on job dissatisfaction points to reasons such as low pay and poor perceptions of the profession in the community and educators’ feeling overburdened with paperwork (Irvine, McDonald, Thorpe & Sumsion, 2016). However, educators’ job (dis)satisfaction impacted by leadership practices imposed in the workplace has not been fully explored. Leadership complexities in Early Childhood Education and Care (ECEC) are underpinned by contextual societal values and beliefs and in Australia. Ineffective leadership practices could be dependent on personality, leadership style and organisational structure (e.g. For-profit or not-for-profit ) (Waniganayake, et al. 2012). This research project aimed to uncover ineffective leadership practices from the perspective of Early Childhood (EC) educators using a phenomenological approach. A phenomenological design unearthed EC educators’ lived experiences and encapsulated multiple perspectives and meanings. An interpretivist paradigm framed the various ways of interpreting meanings involving the construction of social reality viewed through the lens of EC educators actively seeing and reflecting on that reality (Hughes, 2010).
Period2018 → …
Examination held at
Degree of RecognitionInternational